Pete's Walks - Christmas Common, Cookley Green, Ibstone (page 1 of 6)

If you are considering walking this route yourself, please see my disclaimer. You may also like to see these notes about the maps.

Google map of the walk

I did this circular walk of about 13.9 miles on Saturday, 17th February 2018. It was a new route for me, although probably 90% was on paths or bridleways I'd walked on previous routes. The path I took out of Christmas Common at the start of the walk, and the paths I took back into Christmas Common at the end of the walk were the only ones I'd not used before.

I parked in Christmas Common, at the start of the road that goes to Northend and Stonor - there is parking on the right for maybe half a dozen cars here (grid reference SU 714933). I started walking just before 10:10am, going back a few yards to the road junction and turning left along the minor road through Christmas Common. Just before the road left the village I took a public footpath on the right, which started along a drive to a property named The Tower. After about a hundred yards a white arrow on a tree indicated where th path forked right from the drive, heading through a wood. After a while there was some of the parkland around Watlington Park over a fence on my left. Soon after I reached a National Trust sign that informed me that I was entering Lower Deans Wood, and here the path turned left through what was now a typical Chiltern beech wood. The ground sloped steeply downhill to my right, and I could see out through the bare trees towards part of Watlington Hill.

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The road through Christmas Common

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The start of the path from Christmas Common, along the drive to the Tower

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Where the path forks right from the drive to The Tower

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The path from Christmas Common

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The path from Christmas Common

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The path from Christmas Common, now in Lower Deans Wood

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Lower Deans Wood

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Lower Deans Wood

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Lower Deans Wood

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View towards Watlington Hill

After half a mile or so the path left the wood and ran between fences across an area of grass, with Watlington Park visible up to my left. The path then went through a gate and turned right, dropping steeply downhill through a large pasture (currently empty, but I've seen cows here) - I've seen this bit of the path from a distance on several of my walks, and it was the inspiration for devising this particular route today. There was a grand view ahead out over the Oxfordshire Plain, with Watlington Hill nearby to my right - this was a very pleasant section, though I wouldn't enjoy it so much going steeplu uphill the other way! At the bottom of the slope I went through a gate and continued down a track. Another track soon came in on my right, and as I carried straight on here I was back on familiar territory. I followed the drive for about three hundred yards until it ended at Howe Road (coming from Watlington, to my right).

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The path continuing from Lower Deans Wood

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The path descending steeply after turning right

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The path descending steeply after turning right

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The drive from the foot of the hill to Howe Road

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The drive from the foot of the hill to Howe Road

I turned left along the road, using the verge on the left-hand side. After about a quarter of a mile I took a footpath on the right, that started immediately before a property named Dumble Dore on the OS map. This path ran mainly between hedgerows, which often overhung the path so they'd have formed a green tunnel if they'd had leaves on them. There were occasional views left or right over the flat fields beyond the hedges. After about half a mile the path came to a T-junction with a bridleway (coming from Dame Alice's Farm to my right) where I turned left to head for Cookley Green.

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The path from Dumble Dore

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The path from Dumble Dore

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The path from Dumble Dore